Weekend Forecast: Jordan Peele’s Us Poised for Breakout Debut

2019’s first event-level horror release is imminent with this weekend’s domestic launch of Jordan Peele’s highly anticipated follow-up project to Get Out. Will Us break out in similar fashion?

Us
Opening Weekend Range: $45 – 65 million

PROS:

  • Following hugely popular turns in various comedic projects, Jordan Peele proved to be a filmmaking revelation as the writer/director of Get Out. That film earned widespread critical and audience acclaim as it broke genre and cultural barriers, earning $176 million domestically off its $33.4 million opening weekend.
  • The first trailer was strongly received after debuting on Christmas, earning more than 13 million views on the first day from Peele’s Twitter announcement post. It has since amassed over 106 million global views, according to Universal.
  • Buzz out of SXSW amplified anticipation for this release with acclaim very similar to that of Peele’s previous film. Us currently stands at an exceptional 98 percent on Rotten Tomatoes with 110 critics’ reviews.
  • Fandango announced earlier this week that pre-sales are outstripping the trends of A Quiet Place and Get Out.
  • On Trailer Impact, Us stood at 76 percent Average Positive Interest entering this week, comparable to Halloween (76 percent) and ahead of The Nun (64 percent) entering their weeks of release.
  • Traditional industry tracking similarly indicates awareness and interest levels similar to or ahead of Split, Get Out, A Quiet Place, The Nun, and Halloween.
  • The absence of a horror title appealing to a variety of audiences since last October creates a wide open market for this to break out over the weekend.
  • The number of filmmakers to generate significant awareness of their name alone after one movie in the horror genre is a very short list, but Peele is arguably in the company of M. Night Shyamalan post-The Sixth Sense and James Wan post-Insidious. Shyamalan’s follow-up (Unbreakable) earned a $46 million five-day Thanksgiving start in 2000, while Wan’s The Conjuring bowed to $41.9 million in July 2013.

CONS:

  • Though not necessarily a “negative” point, it’s important to consider that Peele’s following has created a greater sense of urgency for fans to see this on opening weekend than is generally true of most original/non-sequel horror films. As such, that could skew any pre-sales comparisons to other original movies.

Top 10 vs. Last Year

Boxoffice projects this weekend’s top ten films will earn approximately $123 million. That would represent a 13 percent increase from the same weekend last year when Pacific Rim Uprising ($28.1 million) unseated Black Panther from first place. Sherlock Gnomes ($10.6 million), Paul, Apostle of Christ ($5.2 million), and Midnight Sun ($4.0 million) also debuted as part of an overall $108.7 million top ten frame.

Weekend Forecast
(Click here to view the full chart in new tab)

FilmDistributor3-Day ForecastProjected Domestic Total through March 24, 2019
UsUniversal$54,000,000 $54,000,000
Captain MarvelDisney / Marvel$35,300,000 $321,400,000
Wonder ParkParamount$9,800,000 $30,000,000
Five Feet ApartLionsgate / CBS$7,400,000 $24,800,000
How to Train Your Dragon 3Universal$6,700,000 $146,000,000
A Madea Family FuneralLionsgate$3,500,000 $65,000,000
No Manches Frida 2Pantelion$2,000,000 $6,900,000
The LEGO Movie 2Warner Bros.$1,600,000 $103,800,000
Captive StateFocus Features$1,400,000 $5,800,000
Alita: Battle AngelFox$1,100,000 $83,900,000

Forecasts subject to change as location counts are finalized before Friday.

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Alex Edghill contributed to this report

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